Tracks: 100 gecs, Metallica, Ben Gregory and more

Wallice, PinkPantheress and the curiously-named Jealous Nostril also feature in this week’s round-up of new music.

While it’s time to get the tinsel out, spend inordinately long periods of time in unending queues and ponder the question of when it’s finally acceptable to open the Celebrations – there are still plenty of new tracks being unleashed into the virtual jukebox daily.

This week has seen 100 gecs finally announce a concrete date for second full-length proper, ’10,000 gecs’, rock behemoths Metallica announce a new record, and Blaenavon vocalist Ben Gregory return with solo material.

So, what are you waiting for? Discover some of the best tracks from the last seven days below now!

100 gecs ft. Skrillex - Torture Me

Occasionally, artists team up in wholly unexpected ways, taking cues from disparate corners of the musical world, leading many to question ‘er, why?’. This is not one of those times. Of course Skrillex should collaborate with 100 gecs. Sure, one may opt for ostentatious light shows and lasers on stage, while the other… share a wizard’s cloak, but they definitely have a shared glitchy, kitchen sink-throwing musical philosophy (the EDM star called 2019 debut album ‘1000 gecs’ “one of the most exciting things that happened in the whole decade.”). ‘Torture Me’ comes with news – finally! – of the release of ’10,000 gecs’, an album that’s been teased for over a year and has already handed us singles ‘mememe’ and ‘Doritos & Fritos’, and continues on the same brain-tinglingly erratic path, cues from alt-rock mashed with signature synth sounds – and in this particular instance, a touch of Skrillex-level epic. Definitely one to introduce the grandparents to over the Christmas break. (Emma Swann)

Metallica - Lux Æterna

That – despite the economic crisis and lowest level of disposable income in living memory – Metallica performing a double-header at next year’s Download caused the event to sell out quicker than ever doesn’t indicate the level of esteem to which the rock legends’ fans hold them, not much else will. The ‘Stones may still carry the mantle of world’s oldest boyband, but Metallica, er, paint it black. ‘Lux Æterna’ is the first track from a new album coming in the spring and while it’s likely to please fans, and unlikely to convert anyone, it is however a surprisingly peppy number with – almost! – a pop element. Those exaggerated air guitars will come with a hum… (Bella Martin)

Ben Gregory - Deathbed Hangover

Influenced by the film score work of Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, and opening with an ominous whomp and a motif of scratchy, high-pitched bleeps, ‘deathbed hangover’ is a fair signal that former Blaenavon frontman Ben Gregory’s solo work isn’t exactly going to be a ‘part two’ on his previous outfit. Three minutes into the claustrophobia and cacophony, however, an actually rather beautiful melody peeks its head through the maelstrom, encasing Ben’s existential musings in a fleeting moment of clarity. Then: a sort of see-sawing between madness and salvation until the end of its seven-minute run time. A familiar balancing act for anyone who’s experienced the crippling morning-after of its title. (Lisa Wright)

Pinkpantheress - boy’s a liar

Sharing a new bop for anyone who’s had the displeasure of falling for a fuck boy, PinkPantheress’ latest ‘Boy’s a liar’ is all about realising that some boys are, for lack of better words, full of shit. Created alongside mura masa, the infectious track is rife with sparkling synth notes over a club-esque bass forming the nostalgia-heavy pop grooves PinkPantheress has become known for. Backing her crystalline vocals, she sings about being taken for a fool (“You only want to hold me when I’m looking good enough /Did you ever feel me? Would you ever picture us?”) before epiphany strikes in the instantly catchy chorus, and she proclaims, “That boy’s a liar”. (Elly Watson)

Wallice - Japan

We’re used to a strong line in high-production, lushly glossy leftfield pop from Wallice, and so ‘Japan’ - a finger-picked, acoustic reflection on the notion of home - might come as some surprise. It’s a curveball, but a gorgeous one; underpinned by subtle, affective strings, there’s a Phoebe Bridgers-ness to the way Wallice uses minimal ingredients to absolutely knock you for six. Thematically, meanwhile, its ideas of displacement and belonging (or lack thereof) cut straight to the core. (Lisa Wright)

Jealous Nostril - California is Their Kryptonite

That a band fronted by Razorlight’s Johnny Borrell are banging on about the States… well, he’s fallen into that one, hasn’t he. And if anyone makes the mental hop, skip and jump between the cowboy twang of ‘California Is their Kryptonite’ and the concept of particular headwear… he’s done for. ‘California Is Their Kryptonite’ isn’t particularly bad, even if he does take the elongated “Californiaaaaaa” right from the Phantom Planet playsheet. Which is probably the point – this is entirely for people for whom that’s not a reference they’d need to Google. And yes, all this without getting into the fact their name is Jealous Nostril. Jealous. Nostril. (Bella Martin)

Tags: 100 gecs, Listen

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